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Best of Broadcast: Did God Command the Israelites to Slaughter Children and Babies?

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown
The Truth Network Radio
May 10, 2024 4:00 pm

Best of Broadcast: Did God Command the Israelites to Slaughter Children and Babies?

The Line of Fire / Dr. Michael Brown

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May 10, 2024 4:00 pm

The Line of Fire Radio Broadcast for 05/10/24.

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Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome, friends, to the line of fire. We are going to do something a little bit different today on the broadcast.

Instead of opening the phone lines, I'm answering some questions that I've been receiving from friends, from colleagues, from former students, from others, saying, Dr. Brown, how do we address this subject? I mean, you've got a verse at the end of Psalm 137 that seems to pronounce a divine blessing on those who smash babies' heads against rocks because it's the enemy's children. And then you have the children of Israel called to exterminate the Canaanites, and in some cases it says that kill everybody, women and children alike. If God commanded the Israelites to do this, if there was some divine blessing and slaughtering babies in this most horrific way, number one, how can we condemn Hamas or ISIS or the Nazis for that matter?

And then, more importantly, how could we worship a God like that since we recognize how morally abhorrent these things are when we see them happening today? How do we answer these questions? So, I trust you understand the importance of these subjects, and I want to do my best to be as fair, honest, clear as I can, facing up to whatever the word does say, but looking at things accurately and with understanding. I do want to start here, though, and in my book, Has God Failed You?, I had a couple of chapters asking about the Bible. Is it bigoted?

Is it outdated? And of course, I tackle these questions about the God of the Old Testament. So, if you're going to quote the Bible, this is what biblical authors said about the God of the Old Testament, and Israel was often called to emulate this behavior. So, I'm just going to read a series of verses to you, and then we're going to deal with what do we do with these other verses.

But first, I just want to paint a picture. If you're going to quote the Bible, then listen to other things that the biblical authors said about their God. The Lord is compassion and gracious. I'm quoting from Psalm 103, verses 8 to 14. The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.

He will not always accuse, nor will He harbor His anger forever. He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His love for those who fear Him.

As far as the east is from the west, so far as He removed our transgressions from us. As the Father has compassion on His children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him. For He knows how we are formed.

He remembers that we are dust. Psalm 145, verses 8 and 9. The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all. He has compassion on all He has made.

He has compassion on all He has made. Now, I'm not denying any of the verses and subjects we're going to talk about and say they're not in the Bible or they never happened. I'm simply saying if you're going to quote the Bible, especially the Old Testament, let's quote other verses as well to give a picture of who God is. Isaiah 49, verses 14 to 16. But Zion said, the Lord has forsaken me. The Lord has forgotten me. Then God answers, can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has born? Though she may forget, I will not forget you. See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands.

Your walls are ever before me. So a mother could actually fail to have compassion on her own child, but God said, not me, not me. Micah 7, verses 18 and 19. Who is a God like you who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever, but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us. You will tread our sins under your foot and heal all our iniquities into the depths of the sea. Who is a God like you?

That's the question that's asked over and over. Jeremiah 31, verse three. The Lord appeared to us in the past saying, I have loved you with an everlasting love.

I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. This is a picture of the God of the Old Testament, compassionate over all his creation, identifying himself as the husband of the widow and the father of the orphan, urging Israel to treat foreigners kindly because they were foreigners in Egypt. Even within Israelite law, how you had to treat your enemy. If your enemy's ox goes astray, you find your enemy's ox wandering, you have to bring it back.

You have to bring it back. You shall love your neighbors yourself. That's Leviticus 19. And then even God's care over his creation from Job chapter 39.

This is from my translation in my commentary on Job. Do you know the time when the mountain goats give birth? Have you watched the calving of the deer? Have you counted the number of months they fulfill and do you know when it's time to give birth?

They crouch. They bring forth their offspring. They send forth their young.

Their little ones become healthy and grow strong in the open field. They leave and don't return to them. Who set the wild donkey free and who loosed the cords of the onager? Whose home I made the desert and his dwelling place the salt land.

He scorns the den of the city. The shouting of the driver he doesn't hear. He ranges the mountains his pasture land searching every green thing. God even asks who provides sustenance for the raven when the little ones cry out to God when they wander around with a food. Job 38. Is God saying I do? Job 38 for Job 38 25 to 27. Who carves out a channel for the torrents of rain and a path for the thunderbolts to rain upon a land without inhabitant a desert devoid of man to satisfy the desolate wasteland and to cause the grass to sprout.

Even where there are no people, even where there are no people, God pours out water on the land so the land can flourish. This is a picture of who he is. So whatever we say about this God, he's not cavalier. He's not short tempered.

He's not petty. He's not like the deities of the ancient world and they're no you're making too much dollars and it's to destroy you. No, he is morally perfect and any sense of moral outrage that we get as C.S. Lewis realizes as an atheist, any sense of moral outrage he got against God had to be because there was a God.

As he said if you wouldn't know what cricket was unless you had straight, where did we get this sense of moral outrage from? It comes because we're created in his image. So let's go over to Psalm 137.

We're going to start there. Psalm 137 and I'll read it to you from the new JPS version. So the exiles, the Jewish exiles, by the rivers of Babylon there we sat, sat and wept as we thought of Zion. There on the poplars we hung up our liars for our captors asked us there for songs, our tormentors for amusement. Sing us one of the songs of Zion. How can we sing a song to the song of the Lord on alien soil? If I forget you, O Jerusalem, let my right hand wither.

Let my tongue stick to my palate. If I cease to think of you, if I do not keep Jerusalem in memory even at my happiest hour. Remember, O Lord, against the Edomites, the day of Jerusalem's fall, how they cried, stripper, stripper to her very foundations. Fair Babylon, you predator, a blessing on him who repays you in kind what you have inflicted on us. A blessing on him who seizes your babies and dashes them against the rocks. Yikes, a blessing?

Okay, first thing, the new JPS definitely has this wrong. The Hebrew ashrei, as they know well, means truly happy. As in Psalm 1, ashrei ha'isha she'loh lachvat sat rishim, truly happy is the man who doesn't walk in the counsel of the wicked.

It is different from the word baruch, meaning blessed, as in blessed by God. So this is saying the one who does these things, the one who repays you for what you've done, will be truly happy. There are several ways that this can be understood. Number one, nowhere is this an ongoing call or command, it is totally contrary to the rest of the spirit of the Bible, and absolutely contrary to the ethic of Jesus, that we are to go and retaliate against those who hurt us by destroying their children as well.

Okay, that's the first thing. This is not an ethic, all time, all people, this is how we live, this is what we do. So we universally understand that. One thing, it could simply reflect the anger of the psalmist. The psalms are raw, and full of human emotion. Sometimes the psalms say, have you forsaken us forever? Is that it?

Is it over? And that's how they felt, and that's what they expressed, and you therefore read this now in the context of all of scripture. Psalm 139 where the psalmist says, don't I hate those who hate you with a perfect hatred? After that he then says, search my heart and see if there's any wicked way. And this is ultimately what we have to do.

It certainly could be in C.S. Lewis, read the psalms like this, that everything has to be viewed ultimately through the canon of Christ, through the standard of the Messiah. So one thing is, this could simply be him expressing his anger, his frustration, his agony, you destroyed us, the one who destroys you is going to be happy.

The one who pays you back for what you did is going to be happy. Another way of understanding this is simply predictive that Israelite poetry is very vivid, is very specific. It doesn't just speak in abstract terms but in very real, literal terms, and it is simply saying that, that the one who does these things, in other words, the judgment on you is going to be so bad, the destruction you suffer is going to be so severe, that the one carrying these things out against you, the one retaliating against you, will be considered truly happy. It is not saying that this person is blessed by God, the Lord blessed you as you go and kill babies.

It is not saying that at all. It is either the sentiment of the psalmist as he pours his heart out, and he is angry, and he is hurting, and he is bitter, and Jesus is teaching us, hey, you have heard this, love your neighbor, hate your enemy. I am telling you, love your enemy.

It doesn't mean you can't go to war, but there is an attitude. You wish these people were not the enemy. You wish that they could be friends and neighbors, but because they are dead set to kill you and destroy you, they have to be taken out. That is what happens in times of war. If someone was trying to attack your family, some thief trying to attack your family and come in with knives and they are going to tie you up and kill you, a band of thieves, and you happen to be a policeman, and you are ready and armed, and you take these people out, you did the right thing.

You did the right thing. And as horrific as this is, it could simply be a prediction that their judgment is going to be so ugly, what happens to them is so horrific, that people will consider you happy, well done, if you commit these horrific deeds even against their children. It is not an ethic. It is not found anywhere in the Bible that this is an ethic, as the Hamas murderers did, to celebrate the murder of innocents and to film it in glory.

No, this is either the psalmist's own anger and frustration pouring out and it's recorded for us, or it is simply vividly seeing the future, saying the one who does these things, your judgment is going to be so bad, the person who does this is actually going to be considered happy as they do. This is Michael Ellison, founder of TriVita Wellness. I want to introduce our TriVita, Alford Livie, original patented sublingual B12, B6, and folate formula. I had the wonderful opportunity of meeting Alford Livie, a pioneer in vitamin research. I also had the opportunity to obtain the patented formula and the rest is history, with over 50 million tablets being taken by our TriVita members through the years. The amazing testimonies of mental clarity, mood enhancement, and more energy have been thrilling to me as a founder of TriVita Wellness. Not only is it an amazing B12 product, but it is loaded with the essential B6 vitamin. I call it the workhorse vitamin. It is vital for strong immune function and every body system. Here is what the National Center for Biotechnology Information says, and I quote, it plays a key role and is crucial to immune function.

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An aggressive radical savings plan can utterly transform your family's finances. You are listening to The Truth Network. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks for joining us on the line of fire. Thank you for standing with us, all of our torchbearers, our monthly supporters, those who pray for us.

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Share the link. We have one desire only. That is to glorify God and make an eternal impact while we are here in this world. So we are not taking calls today. We are discussing the very difficult subject of did God call the children of Israel to slaughter Canaanite babies?

Did he call them to do it? You basically have the period of the conquest when the people of Israel are taking the land. You have that period there. And then you have one time later with Amalek which sought to destroy Israel coming out of Egypt where Amalek was to be destroyed later on during the kingship of Saul.

That's it. You never have this calling on Israel in history or in an ongoing way to attack and kill and slaughter their neighbors. You say it doesn't matter. It happened once basically one major period and then one subsequent and Israel didn't do it anyway. They didn't carry that out against the Amalekites as you read in 1 Samuel 15. It was limited. But if it ever happened at all, right? Fair question.

If God at any point commanded the Israelites to kill babies, to kill children, even if it was 10, that's a moral issue. That is something we must face and discuss. When I did a mini debate on the That's Debatable series that we recorded for a TV network awakening that was just up for a little while then went down. But we have the episodes. You can watch them on our website AskDrBrown.org or our YouTube channel, AskDrBrown.

You can watch the episodes there. That's debatable. I did a mini debate with atheist Dan Barker and he said God commanded the Israelites to rape the Canaanites. Of course it's false. Of course it's false. And when I asked him for scripture, he got testy over it.

You can watch for yourself. He wrote a whole book. He looked it up in the book and then he came with verses. None of them supported what he said. So God never commanded the Israelites to rape the Canaanites. Did he command them at any point to kill women and children? Yes.

Yes. So here are some of the answers that are given. I'll give you my own full perspective but I want to review some other things that have been shared. One is that it is hyperbolic language. That this is the standard language that is used in the ancient Near East. You can read the famous Moabite Stele from the 8th century B.C. So from roughly the time of Isaiah, a couple hundred years after the time of David. And the king of Moab says that he's utterly destroyed Israel.

Putting a nation under the herem, under the ban, utter destruction. It was the language that was used. So I'm going to say something very, very analogous but in a kind of distant way. It's like your team was the underdog and you beat, let's say it's a football game, right? And you were two touchdown underdogs and instead of losing 28 to 14, you won 35 to 21 and you say we trounced them.

We crushed them. Well, the thing was very different than what was expected and you could use some hyperbolic language. Some scholars would say, ancient Near Eastern scholars, look at the language.

Look at how it's used elsewhere in the ancient Near East. That's who they're writing for. That's their audience. They understand this is exaggerated language. They understand this is hyperbolic.

This is the way you just talk. We wiped out everybody. We destroyed everybody.

We completely crushed them. My problem with that, even though I'm fully aware of the ancient Near Eastern language, this is where my degrees are in, my master's and PhD in Near Eastern languages and literatures. So I'm aware of the language. I'm aware of the stylistic issues.

I'm fully aware of that. The problem is the Bible still records that these things happened. The Bible still says that God gave this command to Israel. So even though the way it reads may sound exaggerated to our ears compared to the ancient reality, something actually did happen.

So, yes, we need to recognize the language. We need to recognize the way things were spoken. We need to understand that it could be, in our hearing today, somewhat exaggerated, but something happened, and God did give a commission. Others have argued that the whole of the Old Testament is on a lower level of inspiration, and that many things that the people felt and the people did, they attributed to God. They attributed their own motivations. They attributed their own thoughts. They attributed their own desires to God, and they did what they wanted to do and claimed it was God.

Just like I might say, the Lord told me to quit my job and go stand on the street corner and preach, and I said that because I don't like my job and I want out, so I manufacture hearing that I really think it's God, but I manufactured it. Well, obviously, that only works if you don't believe in the inspiration of Scripture. It only works if you believe that on some level that the inspiration of the Old Testament is not equal to the inspiration of the New Testament, in which case there is no New Testament, in which case the whole thing falls apart because it is built on the foundations of the Old Testament. Jesus says in Matthew 5, 17-20, He didn't come to abolish the law of the prophets but to fulfill. Paul says at the end of Romans 3 that faith does not abolish the law but establishes it. Paul says in 2 Timothy 3, 16 that all Scripture is given by inspiration of God. All Scripture is speaking of there is what we call the Old Testament today. Jesus would quote, like John 10, the Scripture cannot be broken. Or quoting the Word as it is written, as it is written, as it is written. So the idea that this was just the idea of Moses, the idea that this was just something he came up with, and then said God said that we were to kill, no, then we have to throw the whole thing out.

Who knows what else he just dreamt up and claimed was God. So that explanation by other scholars and even some Christian leaders that would be more, quote, progressive, I have to reject that as well for obvious reasons. And if you believe the Bible to be God's Word, the same as I do, you have to reject that view as all. There is another view that says that what we have to understand, archaeology teaches us, is that these were not just villages, these were fortresses. That the places that Israel was attacking, that these were all fortresses and that they were basically war bases. And you'd hardly have women and children there. And if they were there, they were putting themselves in harm's way.

And, for example, Dr. Paul Copan would be someone who would advocate for that in some of his important writings about the God of the Old Testament and is he a moral monster and did he call for ethnic cleansing or genocide or things like that. So, that's something else to factor in. How much of this was actually enemy combatants?

What number of women and children would have been there? Perhaps we are exaggerating the whole picture. It certainly did not resemble what Hamas did in terms of just glorying and slaughtering people and celebrating it and hey friends, Dr. Michael Brown here. Do you remember when people thought I was crazy when I said it's not too late for America, that God can still do something in our country, that there is going to be a pushback, a gospel-based moral and cultural revolution?

And do you remember when people thought that you were crazy because you felt the same way, because you believed what I was saying and already felt it in your heart? Well, friends, that pushback is here. The gospel-based moral and cultural revolution we've been talking about for 25 years is unfolding and we are right in the thick of it and the line of fire broadcast is divinely positioned for such a time as this. Friends, you would be so gratified and blessed as I hear, if you could hear what I hear, testimony after testimony as leaders, young people, old people, moms, dads, students, people from all backgrounds come up to me and say, Dr. Brown, you're providing a template for us.

You're providing a blueprint for us. You're showing us how to do this, how to have hearts of compassion, backbones of steel, but friends, it's a joint effort. We do this together and with your support, we can amplify this broadcast around the nation and amplify this voice to shake the nation. Join our support team today.

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Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome back friends to the Line of Fire broadcast. Hey, just a reminder for you.

Do I have this? Yeah. When you reaching back and trying to stay near the mic, when you join us as a monthly supporter, a torchbearer, giving a dollar a day or more for the ministry and some are able to give much more, some a dollar a day is a challenge and we honor that. We respect that.

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Online, so many other resources, exclusive video content. But one of the books that we send you is Compassionate to Father or Consuming Fire, Who is the God of the Old Testament? And I get into this subject at some length here.

I initially addressed it. The book came out in 85 and then a couple years back, I updated it, added to it, sharpened some of the language and we put out beautiful hardcover editions. So this is one of the two books you get free.

Of course you can order it. But if you're a torchbearer, you should have this if you got it signed up in recent months. Look into this, digs deeper. Also what we decided to do because of the urgency of the hour during the month of October is give you two extra free books when you sign up. Our Hands are Stained with Blood, The Tragic Story of the Church and the Jewish People and Christian Antisemitism. Some of the most eye-opening books you will ever read and heart-rending as well. Four books free when you sign up as a monthly torchbearer.

You can do that by going to askdrbrown.org, askdrbrown.org, click on monthly support, donate. Thank you friends for standing with us. This is about us shaking this nation at this urgent time and equipping the body to be on the front line so together we can see Jesus glorified in this critical season. Alright, so you remember that when the Israelites went into the land of Canaan that they commented on the inhabitants there were giants. Now, no one ever denied that. Joshua and Caleb, the two spies out of the 12 who said we can take the land, they never denied that there were giants. And Moses never denied it. What they said was God's with us and we can take the land.

God's with us and we can take the land. Where did the giants come from? You remember in Genesis the 6th chapter that before the flood, it gives the account of how the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they looked good, they took them as their wives. And then their offspring called the Nephilim. So there's great debate about what that means and fallen ones and those who fall on others, etc. But it's clear, contextually, even ancient versions, that they're giants.

And it is a mixed breed. It is something, you know, I never saw the movie but Rosemary's Baby, what is it, she gives birth to the devil himself? You know, you compare this to Rosemary's Baby, I'm making a point, I'm making a point that this was a satanic mixed breed.

These were fallen angels who somehow were able to take on human form. And if you're gonna quote the Bible, I mean just, here's what the Bible's saying. And their offspring, it was something abominable. God says the earth was filled with violence in those days. It was so bad that he had to wipe the human race out, lest it destroy itself. If he didn't rescue just no way finds one righteous man and then rescues his family so his wife, three sons and their wives to repopulate the earth, we wouldn't be here. The whole world would have been completely wiped out because of human wickedness.

It was at that point. Think of the whole world into all kinds of sexual perversion, the whole world into all types of horrific violence, the whole world into all kinds of evil. It's going to completely destroy itself. There will be no human race, there will be no people with God forever, there will be no redemption, there will be no cross, nothing. So God does something radical, he wipes out everyone on the earth. If he doesn't do that, no one survives.

No one survives if he doesn't do that. But it does say that after the flood there's still giants. And Genesis 6 could say it was before the flood and even after. So there are those who hold the view that those living in Canaan were the descendants of the Nephilim were a wicked half-breed that had to be destroyed.

That simply had to be destroyed and wiped out. Otherwise, as Israel came into the land with intermarriage and other things like that, now Israel itself would be destroyed and Israel would never be a light to the nations, Messiah would never come to the world, the whole world now ends up destroyed. So there are those who believe that the ones that Israel was called to wipe out were this dangerous half-breed of humans. Fallen angel, human and their descendants. And that ultimately they were wiped out finally by Israel.

That none of the descendants of the giants were left. And that that was the reason, the justification. And in that case it would be like some type of modern alien story with an alien mixture in the human race which is now going to corrupt the whole human race and had to be dealt with radically.

So that sounds pretty wild. Here's the deal. If you're going to quote one part of the Bible, then you can't throw out the other part of the Bible if it adds more information. So there are scholars who hold to this view. There are Christian leaders who hold to this view. It may sound very odd at first glance, but remember the inhabitants of the land are described as giants. So the reason for wiping them out was because of the evil, because of it being some type of an alien mixture that would only bring destruction. And therefore it was essential to bring judgment and to eradicate them so that the human race could continue and Israel could continue.

Now, you may buy that or not. Study it for yourself. Dig into it.

Study it for yourself. Let me give you the larger perspective. The judgment later on the Amalekites is a judgment of historic proportions because of horrific sins committed.

And we'll come back to that in a moment. But I want to focus on the land of Canaan, the inhabitants of the land of Canaan. Now again, different scholars, different interpreters are going to have different perspectives. And you can read what Dr. Michael Heizer said. You could read what Dr. John Walton and the Sun say on some of these different issues. Dr. Paul Copan, Dr. David Lamb, different scholars, different perspectives, all wrestling honestly with the text here.

I want to give you a bigger picture, okay? I mentioned that God destroyed the entire world in the time of the flood in order to preserve the human race. There is a Hebrew, Shachat, and it's used in two different sides of the same coin. The human race had become corrupt.

That's one side of the root Shachat. And it was destroying itself, the other side of the root Shachat, and destroying the earth. And with the lifespans as long as they were before the flood, God looks at this and realizes the thoughts of their heart only evil continually. They're going to destroy everything. There is going to be no ongoing human race.

And I must destroy the entire world through a flood right now. It was an act of severe mercy. If God did not do that, there would be no human race. We would not be here today.

We would have completely destroyed ourselves. That's God's perspective knowing that. So let's look at it in the context, say, of gangrene. That gangrene sets into someone's foot and then into their leg as they're out, lost, frozen in the wilderness. By the time they're rescued, their leg is looking green and rotten. And the doctor knows, okay, we have two choices. We amputate the entire leg.

In some cases, I saw just a horrific thing, a mom and got infected with something and just out of the blue thing. And to save her life, they had to amputate both feet and both legs. It was to save her life.

That's why it was done. When God wiped out the world through the flood, it was to preserve the human race. Now, let's think about Israel. Remember, this is not an ongoing command in Israel in terms of how they treat others. And if David went out and committed certain atrocities or certain violent acts, the Bible records things to make clear that not everything that people did was right. If the Bible commends someone, God through a prophet commends someone for doing a particular thing, that's one thing. But the Bible records lots of things that people did.

In the context of their day, they were very common, but the Bible records it to say this is wrong or just observe this and learn from it. Okay, so the big picture, the big picture. The children of Israel called by God, why? To be a light to the world. God's desire is to bless the whole world. It's not because he's setting his sights on Israel. I just want to bless Israel.

No, his sights are set on Israel so we can bless the whole world. Genesis 12 three, he calls Abraham so the whole world could be blessed through Abraham's seed. That's why he chooses Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, the children of Israel, why he so patiently gives them his Torah, why he instructs them, why he disciplines them, why? Because they have a mission. They have a purpose and their mission and their purpose is to be a light to the world. And through this people, the Messiah will come and will be known to the world.

Why? Because God wants to save hundreds of millions of people. God wants to forgive the sins of billions of people. God wants people with him forever and ever and ever and ever and ever, worshiping him, loving him, enjoying him and extraordinary joy and peace and fulfillment beyond anything we've ever experienced.

We've just got little down payments now to be with him forever and ever and ever. And therefore, because he's given us free will, he's given us choices to do things. We sin, we do evil.

He sees what he will do. He will send his son to die in our place that whoever believes in him could have eternal life and would not perish. In order for that to happen, there had to be a people through whom he could come. If Jesus came to India 2,000 years ago, born into a Hindu family, first could he have been raised in a richly clean environment? Secondly, when he began to teach, would they have any understanding what he's talking about in conception of sin and atonement and holiness and the one God? And then when he died from the cross and rose from the dead or worked miracles before that, would they have just thought he's another incarnation of Krishna or another Hindu deity and worshiped him? In other words, there'd be no understanding of salvation. There'd be no understanding of righteousness. There'd be no understanding of our sin against God.

There'd be no understanding of our need for forgiveness. God prepared that way through Abraham for 2,000 years through his offspring so that there would be a people through whom the Messiah could come and then die, rise, and his message be understood. That's why it's Jewish emissaries, Jewish apostles then go and share that message with the world, because they're the ones that understood it as Jewish people. This is part of Israel's calling to be a light to the world. If Israel ceases to exist, there is no redemption. Israel falls into sin to the point it has to be judged and wiped out by God. There is no redemption. There is no salvation. And none of us are saved today.

Those are the stakes. When we come back, I'll give you my final understanding of how we sort these difficult passages out. I'm Paul Burnett, a board-certified doctor of holistic health. Over the years, I have helped countless people increase and maintain their natural energy production with Alfred Libby's slow-dissolved Super B12, sold only by TriVita. I have never met anyone deficient in caffeine or sugar, but I have met many people deficient in energy-supporting vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is one of the eight B vitamins and is an essential nutrient, meaning the body cannot make B12 on its own. You see, unlike other oral B12 supplements, Alfred Libby's slow-dissolved Super B12 is fast-acting because the formula is scientifically developed to dissolve under the tongue, bypassing the digestive process, making it immediately available for use in the body. Alfred Libby's slow-dissolved Super B12 is also formulated with other natural energy-supporting ingredients, such as folate, ginseng root, and other natural ingredients.

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Call 1-800-771-5584, 1-800-771-5584, or online at TriVita.com. It's the Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the Line of Fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.

Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks for joining us, friends. I hope you appreciate the content here as we're doing our best to dig in the Word honestly and fairly. I am not thinking that if you will be an atheist, you have no particular reason to believe the Bible is true or God's Word, that my answers are impressive.

Maybe they're helping some, but I'm not so much trying to convince a skeptic as much as help fellow believers by looking at these things honestly and not minimizing the realities. So, here's what we do understand. God told the children of Israel not to do what the Canaanites were doing because they were exceedingly wicked. And when sins are spoken of in Leviticus 18, they include burning babies alive in idolatry. This is some of what was being practiced in the religion of the Canaanites and those dwelling in the land before Israel took the land.

Every type of sexual perversion, and it's possible also that they're descendants of the Nephilim, so hence an alien race. Let's just put that aside. We know for sure that it's because of the wickedness of the nations that God's driving them out. According to Genesis 15, God waited four hundred years to do it.

Longer than America has been, the United States of America, by far. Four hundred years God waited to carry out this act of judgment. Even though it meant Israel suffering as slaves in Egypt, God had to wait, Genesis 15, until the iniquity of the Amorites reached its full measure.

He waited until it got to a certain point that he had to act. Again, if you just think of people being like ISIS, or little children being trained to be terrorists as Hamas, etc. ISIS even, you know, here's giving the weapon to the kid to execute a prisoner. The evil, the wickedness was that widespread, the perversion that widespread. I know it's not a popular narrative, but if you're going to look at what the Bible says, then this is how the Bible explains it. And that God told them, don't intermarry with their children. Your children and their children. Don't worship their gods.

If you do, I'm going to have to destroy you, because you're going to fall into the same wickedness. And, remember, he waits four hundred years to carry this out, and then finally says, okay, go in and drive them out. So, some are driven out. Some are simply driven out and flee. That's one reality.

L'gharish, l'harish, to drive out, to dispossess. That's part of what happens. Others are executed. Now, there are some rabbis who believe that Israel declared peace to every nation, not just the further nations, that's what they're called during Deuteronomy, declare, hey, just accept who we are right here, and we live in peace, and if not, they will fight you. There are rabbinic traditions that Israel did that for the near cities as well, but scripture seems to say the opposite, that those are the ones God said, drive out. Israel barely makes it through history. Israel barely makes it through history. The ten northern tribes scattered. The kingdom of Judah, exiled. Temple destroyed, not rebuilt to this day. We barely survive as a nation and people, and God only knows what happened to some of the scattered tribes and some just lost to history entirely.

All right? Others just merged within the larger Jewish people. We barely made it as it was. If the Canaanites had been allowed to live side by side or just subjugate it in some ways, or just, okay, kill the combatants, marry the women, and raise the children as your own, Israel would have soon been worshipping the gods of these nations. Just look in Numbers 25 what happens with the Midianites. God has made himself so clear over this, and here they are intermarrying, and now a plague falls on them. This is not just God being vindictive, you did the wrong thing, I'm gonna smash you. This is God saying, if I don't deal with the gangrene, it's gonna go through your whole body and you are gonna die.

We may have to amputate your limbs, but at least you can live. That's the judgment that came on Israel through the centuries. It wasn't God being vindictive, it was God saying, judgment must come, sin must be punished, but this is the only thing that's gonna save you from further damage and destruction.

God's ultimately redemptive in everything he does. Now, of course, the eternal fate of babies can be differed with. As I understand it, babies, little children, up to whatever age God knows, it can be very different for every child, are accountable to God in different ways. That's why Jesus says in Matthew 18, let the little children come to me, because the kingdom of God is like them, you gotta become like a little child to enter the kingdom. Or Deuteronomy 139, that your little ones didn't understand the difference between good and evil. So as the eternal fate of these children, just like the horror of aborted babies, I believe they go to be with the Lord.

I believe they go to be with the Lord. There's another side to this. There's another side. We understand that there can be so much corruption and sin in this society, that you say, okay, we'll just live side by side, or we'll let this group live and this group live, and they end up turning on you because you're the enemy, because they hate you, or because they're wicked to their very, very core. And young children can be raised in such a way and programmed in such a way by parents that it's very difficult to get junk out of them.

So I want to ask this question. Remember, this happened at a very limited time, this happened in a limited scope, and Israel basically failed to carry it out, for the most part. And that's why you had the Canaanites dwelling with them side by side.

Just read the first few chapters of Judges. They didn't drive them out in many, many places. But let's just say we're, let's just say still a few were killed. Let's say some number, somewhere, that there were babies that were actually killed. So let's accept that that happened.

So is there any possible explanation for it? Well, one is that it was a sinful, destructive half-breed, that it was the very nature, the very nature of these people, because they were not fully human, that they were going to be destructive, and that they had to be wiped out, otherwise they would just multiply again and bring greater destruction and evil. That's one way of looking at it.

Here is another. And again, this is only known by God, and at one specific time in history, never to be repeated. The judgment that comes at Amalek later, that is, you've sinned against the people of Israel in years past, you will suffer for it. And if a generation continues to walk in the sins of the fathers, if a generation continues to walk in the hostile ways of its fathers, then when judgment comes, it's deserved in that later generation. If the people of Amalek had repented and had a different attitude towards Israel, God would have withheld judgment. It is when the sins are continued.

That's self-evident. That's why the judgment comes, because the sins continue, hence God bringing judgment. With repentance, Jeremiah 18, read it.

If he's about to bring judgment, you repent and withhold the judgment. So, my understanding is, and there are actually studies that have pointed in this direction, that you can be a child of people who were guilty of a particular practice or crime, and you were predisposed to that. Now, obviously, we have a redemptive view.

We bring every child into the world and do our best to develop and help them. But could it have been one unique time in history? And God, remember, waits 400 years. Who knows the level of evil? Who knows how deeply it had infected generations?

Who knows the corruption that was actually there? That this one time in history, in order to preserve Israel, so that the Messiah could come into the world and hundreds of millions of people be saved, that one time in history, God gave the command to wipe these people out. And even then, they didn't do it. Even then, Israel barely made it.

Thank God salvation came. Would it make sense in the light of eternity? We're not talking about a land dispute. We're not talking about vengeance, anger, anything like that.

We're not talking about gloating in people's destruction. But would it make sense in the light of eternity for hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of millions of people to be with God forever and ever and ever? That in one extreme time, God commanded wiping out or destroying a certain people, even down to children or babies, whatever the number was. It was five.

It doesn't matter. That there was 100 if it was all that evil. If it had to be done that one time for those eternal purposes and for hundreds of millions to be saved and for those children, if God knew they were already given over to destruction and He saw in cutting their life short, they could be with Him forever because they hadn't acted these things out yet.

That's one. And two, they would not get to carry out acts of evil that would ultimately be part of corrupting Israel, ultimately cause Israel to fall away, fall into divine judgment. The whole world fall into divine judgment.

No human race, no redemption. Would it make sense? Yes, yes it would.

Yes it would. And it would ultimately be a moral decision. That's how I have understood it over the years. That's how I open it up in Compassion Father, Consuming Father, Who is the God of the Old Testament? So if you have that book, check it out. If you have my book, Has God Failed You?, I address it there as well in the two chapters about the Bible is bigoted, outdated, etc. And the big thing is, look at the overall statements about who God is and how we are to treat even enemies. Look at the overall statements in scripture about His forgiveness, mercy, compassion, and recognize the pain that He carries over the suffering of the human race.

We've talked about that a lot in recent weeks. The pain that He carries, as Basilina Schling said, anyone who loves as much as God does must suffer immensely. Slight paraphrase. And anyone who knows God must be able to recognize that. So the one who's compassionate, the one who's tender towards the orphan, towards the widow, the one who rebukes leaders in Israel for not caring for the poor, and for not caring for the underdog, and who rebukes them for their selfishness and their narcissism, and who calls on Israel to treat others, foreigners in their midst with compassion because they were foreigners as well, that judges them when they don't release their own indentured servants slash slaves. That's the God that we're serving, and His ultimate expression comes to us through the cross.

That's what we must present. So what happened, how it happened? There were divine reasons for it that when you can step back and recognize it, and then take what the Bible says seriously, it makes sense. You say, I don't believe that. Well then, don't ask me about the slaughter of the Canaanites in the Bible if you don't believe what the Bible says, because I'm explaining in the context of Scripture. And remember, God allowed His own people to suffer terrible enslavement and hardship in Egypt because it wasn't time yet for the Promised Land. Four hundred years waiting before the level of evil reached that point. He said, okay, we must wipe them out now, all generations. Otherwise, there will be no preservation of the people of Israel, and no Savior coming into the world, and no salvation for hundreds of millions of people. It makes sense in the life of the people. Another program powered by the Truth Network.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-05-10 21:33:14 / 2024-05-10 21:53:42 / 20

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